About Civil Defence Emergency Management
Learn more about CDEM and what we do below.
The Civil Defence Emergency Management Act 2002 establishes a framework for building resilient New Zealand communities.
The National CDEM Strategy is the crowns vision for emergency management in New Zealand and is supported by:
- The National CDEM Plan, which sets out strategies and goals, outlining arrangements for managing emergency events of national significance, and,
- CDEM Group Plans, outlining similar arrangements at the regional level.
The Civil Defence Emergency Management Act 2002 establishes to:
- Promote sustainable management of hazards
- Enabling communities to achieve acceptable levels of risk
- Requires co-ordination of CDEM activities
- Encourages co-ordination and integration across sectors to address interdependencies
The National CDEM Strategy: 'The Crowns Vision'
- Goal 1 Increase community awareness, understanding and participation in CDEM
- Goal 2 Reduce the risks from hazards to New Zealand
- Goal 3 Enhance New Zealand’s capability to manage emergencies
- Goal 4 Enhance New Zealand’s capability to recover from disasters
The National CDEM Plan: 'The Plan and the Guide to the National Plan'
The National CDEM plan:
- Provides CDEM arrangements to manage hazards and risks at the national level
- Supports the management of local emergencies
The Southland Civil Defence Emergency Management Group Plan 2012 – 2017
- Sets the strategic direction for CDEM in the Southland region – 5 year plan
- Manages regionally significant hazards and risks
- Provides operational arrangements - readiness, response and recovery
- Provides administrative and financial arrangements
- Outlines targets and actions to meet the National plan's objectives
What is the Civil Defence Emergency Management Group?
Civil Defence and Emergency Management Groups (CDEM Groups) are set up all over New Zealand, as part of the requirement of the Civil Defence and Emergency Management Act which became law on 1 December 2002. The CDEM Groups are based on regional boundaries and bring together local councils, emergency services, health boards and other organisations that are involved with emergency management. The broad purpose of the CDEM Group is to assist the communities of Southland to be more aware of and prepare for the significant hazards that they may face, and to provide governance and oversight to enable the community and emergency response organisations to be more resilient to an emergency event caused by those hazards in the future.
The Southland CDEM Group was formally established in March 2003 and is a joint committee of the local authorities in the Southland region. The Joint Committee members are:
- Gore District Council
- Southland District Council
- Invercargill City Council
- Environment Southland (Southland Regional Council)
Each local authority is represented on the joint committee by their Mayor, and Environment Southland by the Chairperson's representative.
Agreement on Joint Civil Defence Services
In 2010 the Southland Local Authorities of; Invercargill City Council, Southland District Council, Gore District Council and Environment Southland agreed that their responsibilities for CDEM under the CDEM Act 2002 shall be combined and delivered through one body – Emergency Management Southland.
Is a stand-alone entity working on behalf of all the councils in Southland. Each council has equal participation in and control of EMS. EMS comprises of an Emergency Management Office and an Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) located on the corner of Price Street and North Road, Invercargill. EMS coordinates and facilitates the day-to-day planning and project work on behalf of the Southland CDEM Group.
Environment Southland is the administering authority for the Southland CDEM Group and provides premises and equipment for Emergency Management Southland.
Supporting the Joint Committee is the Coordinating Executive Group, a statutory mandated committee made up of agencies that have a leading role in delivering civil defence emergency management in our region. This reflects the fact that, as required by legislation, civil defence is a multi-agency responsibility. The CEG members are:
- the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) (or their delegates) from
- a senior member of the police who is assigned for the purpose by the Commissioner of Police
- a senior member of the Fire Service who is assigned for the purpose by the National Commander
- the CEO (or their delegates) from Southern District Health Board
- any other persons that may be co-opted by the Joint Committee
The CEG is responsible for:
- providing advice to the Joint Committee and any subgroups or subcommittees
- implementing, as appropriate, the decisions of the Joint Committee
- overseeing the implementation, development, maintenance, monitoring, and evaluation of the CDEM Group Plan
The CEG has no prescribed operational role.
A sub-committee of the Joint Committee and established immediately following the signing of the Agreement on Joint Civil Defence Services in July 2010 for the purpose of ensuring the effective combination and implementation of the council’s responsibilities for Civil Defence Emergency Management under the CDEM Act. The OSC members are:
A senior management team member (or their alternate), appointed by their respective CEO, with emergency management responsibilities from:
- Gore District Council
- Southland District Council
- Invercargill City Council
- Environment Southland [Convener]
This committee is chaired by the Group Controller. The role of the RRC is to co-ordinate joint activities such as training, operations, and exercises, to facilitate resource sharing amongst the member organisations to ensure that readiness, response and recovery planning at the local level is consistent with the Group Plan. RRC members include:
A management representative from the following emergency response organisations with operational responsibility –
- NZ Police
- NZ Fire Service
- St John
- Southern Rural Fire Authority
- Southern District Health Board
plus other agencies actively involved in emergency response – e.g.
- Department of Conservation
- Defence Force
- Department of Labour
CDEM has the overall responsibility for the provision of welfare services to affected individuals, families and communities during a civil defence emergency event. Welfare response is a coordinated action undertaken by government and non-government social services agencies and organisations to ensure affected communities have information on and easy access to a range of welfare services available to or needed by them. Welfare responsibilities are shared between two roles:
Responsible for the provision of input on welfare-related reduction measures, the coordination of welfare readiness and the provision of strategic welfare management and support during and post an emergency event response. During an emergency response the Welfare Manager is the principle adviser to the Group Controller and provides impact and response reports to the National Welfare Coordination Group. Takes the lead welfare role during the response and recovery phases and support role (to the WAG Chair) during the reduction and readiness phases.
Welfare Advisory Group (WAG)
The WAG comprises agencies with roles and responsibilities that are essential to the coordination and delivery of welfare services at CDEM Group and is chaired by the Ministry of Social Development. The WAG Chair is responsible for planning welfare coordination and supporting welfare coordination during an emergency response and recovery. Takes the lead welfare role during the reduction and readiness phases and support role (to the Welfare Manager) during the response and recovery phases.
The aim of the WAG is to coordinate the agencies across Southland with a role in providing welfare to plan and coordinate the region's welfare activities across readiness, reduction, response and recovery. WAG members include:
The EOC, located on the corner of Price Street and North Road, Invercargill, is the well-equipped facility from which any response to a CDEM emergency will be coordinated. The Group Controller has overall responsibility for the EOC activities and is supported by staff from Emergency Management Southland and council staff using the Coordinated Incident Management System (CIMS) model.
The focus at the EOC level is:
- coordination of the event through tactical and strategic management
- operational tasks and activities
- organise welfare support to affected communities
- providing information to the public
Controllers and Declarations
The Southland Civil Defence Emergency Management Group has appointed Group Controllers in accordance with Sections 26 and 27 of the Civil Defence Emergency Management Act.
The Group Controller must, during a state of emergency, direct and co-ordinate the use of personnel, materials, information, services, and other resources made available by councils and other persons.
The Civil Defence Emergency Management priority is public safety, reducing the loss of life and injury, and relieving the distress of those affected by the emergency event.
Civil Defence Emergency Management is often involved in localised events such as floods and storms, monitoring conditions throughout the troubled district, tracking weather patterns and keeping an overview to ensure safety.
Civil Defence Emergency Management's role widens when an official state of national or local emergency is declared under section 68 or section 69 of the Civil Defence Emergency Management Act 2002.
Declaring a state of emergency allows the Group Controller and others access to statutory powers. Its purpose is to be a public method of granting people the necessary authority to protect life and property in extraordinary emergency events.
The rationale for declaring a state of emergency is:
- an emergency event has occurred or may occur
- the safety of the public or property is endangered
- loss of life, injury or illness or distress may be caused
- usual services are inadequate to deal with the emergency
If a state of emergency is in force, you must follow all instructions given by emergency services and civil defence emergency management.